This morning I exchanged the winter obi covering the altar table in the front hall, with its scene of birds and snow, for this one scattered with pretty pastel spring blooms. So serene.
We rotate our home's interiors based on the Japanese aesthetic concept called shun - seasonality. When a new season arrives - according to the weather, not the calendar - we change our seasonal displays and our decorations - cushions, throws, candles. It is rare that these occur at the same time, but this year the weather gained ten degrees on the first of September. Lovely.
Along with the change in our interiors, so is there a change in the rhythm of our days. Jemimah packed her morning books into a bag this morning and headed out to the hammock with the dog and a long glass of iced water. Gone are the days of snuggling under her blankets to read - de rigueur only a week or so ago. She'll read our there for an hour or so, and then come back inside for a piece of fruit and a narration, and a bit of table work. Perhaps this afternoon we'll head out to the recliners on the deck while I read Ben Hur aloud. I'd like that.
I've learned that its not worth spending too long over-scheduling our days. We have a list to get through by the end of each day, week, and term, but the order will change not only with the season, but also with our mood, or simply on a whim. A day like today simply screams 'come outside'. Postponing that nature walk simply because its not on the schedule until Thursday seems counterintuitive, somehow.
Adjusting our days like this seems sort of peaceful. It allows time for a morning perigrination around the garden, coffee in hand, to inspect the abundant spring growth. It lets us discover new birds like the Blue-faced Honeyeater we spotted this morning and then learn more about them in our field guide. A Charlotte Mason education allows plenty of time for these rabbit trails, because it encourages learning all the time, not just in school hours, and those school hours can be done in a morning - or an afternoon, as you choose, but don't take up both. There is still time for living.
Today there are little reminders of spring all around my home. Camellias, freesias, orchids. They make me feel really happy. And the best bit? It will be spring tomorrow as well. And every day for the next three months. And then it will be summer. And you know something? I love summer too, and the long evenings,and the holidays and Christmas. Plus, I have a lovely collection of summer obis to enjoy on the altar table in the front hall.
He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding. Daniel 2:21 NIV